When thinking of ideas for movies, creators turn to a number of influences — including the fans themselves.
This is why Tom Cruise nearly donned the Iron Man suit.
It all began after “Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness” was announced, and fans started speculating whether the “Top Gun: Maverick” star would make an appearance as a variant of Tony Stark’s Iron Man.
The rumors didn’t seem too far-fetched considering the actor told IGN he was approached to play the ingenious Avenger in 2005, but he ultimately conceded, “As it was lining up, it just didn’t feel to me like it was gonna work. I need to be able to make decisions and make the film as great as it can be, and it just didn’t go down that road that way.”
Robert Downey Jr. ended up taking on the role in 2008’s “Iron Man,” which kicked off the Marvel Cinematic Universe. So audiences never got to see Cruise appear in the MCU.
On Monday, “Multiverse of Madness” screenwriter Michael Waldron revealed to Rolling Stone that at one point he tried to make the case for Cruise.
The new Marvel blockbuster explores alternate realities after a forbidden spell opens a portal to the multiverse, which contains very different versions of the MCU characters that audiences are accustomed to.
With so much hype surrounding a Cruise appearance, Waldron took a step to try and make the fan theory come to life on the big screen.
“Yeah, that was totally made up. I mean, there’s no cut footage of Tom Cruise,” he said, speaking on the online rumors. “But I love Tom Cruise, and I said to [Marvel Studios president] Kevin [Feige] at one point, I was like, ‘Could we get Tom Cruise’s Iron Man?’ I remember reading about that in Ain’t It Cool News back in the day, that Tom Cruise was going to be Iron Man.”
He continued, “As it was being talked about online, I was like, ‘Yeah, that’d be cool!’”
Waldron shared that he was unsure if Cruise was ever contacted about the role, mainly because it could have posed a timing challenge considering the “Mission: Impossible” star’s tight schedule.
“I just don’t think it was ever an option, because of availability,” Waldron added.
“Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness,” which stars Benedict Cumberbatch, Elizabeth Olsen, Rachel McAdams, Chiwetel Ejiofor, Benedict Wong and Xochitl Gomez, is now in theaters.
The action-packed mystical sequel grossed an estimated $185 million in ticket sales in its first weekend in U.S. and Canadian theaters, the Walt Disney Co. said Sunday.
The film raked in double the opening of the first “Doctor Strange,” which debuted at $85 million in 2016. It also outshined “The Batman,” taking the lead as the biggest opener of the year.
Watch the trailer here: